Tropical Fruit Forum - International Tropical Fruit Growers

Temperate Fruit & Orchards => Temperate Fruit Discussion => Topic started by: Citradia on July 19, 2020, 02:03:45 PM

Title: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: Citradia on July 19, 2020, 02:03:45 PM
Squirrel are taking my unripe pears and peaches again. What herbal/natural Concoction can I spray on the fruit to deter the vermin? Peppermint essential oil solution maybe? News flash! Plastic owls donít scare anything! The squirrels skip happily under the electric fence too; itís just to keep bears and deer out.
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: brian on July 19, 2020, 11:25:44 PM
Peppermint oil might work.  Cayenne pepper is also suggested. 
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: spaugh on July 19, 2020, 11:28:59 PM
I spray with #6 lead birdshot.  Its completely organic.  :D
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: Longranger on July 26, 2020, 08:18:20 PM
Brad that sounds so satisfying. Currently I am using a .22 air rifle. I hate squirrels, rats and gophers. Squirrels the worst. Hope you don,t use that method in your greenhouse.
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: spaugh on July 26, 2020, 09:57:50 PM
Brad that sounds so satisfying. Currently I am using a .22 air rifle. I hate squirrels, rats and gophers. Squirrels the worst. Hope you don,t use that method in your greenhouse.

I only shoot the shotgun when they are on the perimeter of the orchard so theres no lead going in the grow area.  Im about to go set out some modified rat traps with nails in them tonight and see if I can get any that way.  The little buggers are a real pain.  I hate squirrels the most, followed by goohers and then jackrabbits.  We have some wild field mice that chew down young seedling trees too. 

Its a constant battle...
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: Longranger on July 27, 2020, 12:14:22 PM
Ordered a thermal night scope to try to get an edge--NOT JOKING. I will sleep better if I can rid my orchard of destructive critters before bedtime. If I begin to feel mercy I will think about my two devastated almond trees. They look like Brad put a dozen shotgun blasts through each of them >:(
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: Triloba Tracker on July 27, 2020, 04:56:25 PM
Can you really make a dent in the squirrel population though?
Not that itís not satisfying to try.

I hope my planned electric fence works to keep out groundhogs, possums, and coons.
I donít have a lot of squirrels in my orchard - Yet
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: spaugh on July 28, 2020, 09:34:15 PM
Can you really make a dent in the squirrel population though?

Yes you can if your area isnt completely overrun with them.  I know how many I've got at any given time and can get them then be clear again until the following mating season.

One of my neighbors has a 20 acre horse boarding ranch with 100 horses.  That's ground zero breeding ground from which all the squirrels migrate out from each year. 
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: Triloba Tracker on July 28, 2020, 10:15:57 PM
Gotcha.
I use the same approach with groundhogs.
I catch one and am usually good for a month or 2. Or maybe until the next summer.
But not so sure about more populous critters here.
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: spaugh on July 30, 2020, 12:36:07 AM
Ordered a thermal night scope to try to get an edge--NOT JOKING. I will sleep better if I can rid my orchard of destructive critters before bedtime. If I begin to feel mercy I will think about my two devastated almond trees. They look like Brad put a dozen shotgun blasts through each of them >:(

I had one of those scopes, it was pretty cool.  Wasnt legal in CA, not sure how you got it, but good luck with it, its a lot of fun to use.

It helps if you have good neighbors.  My neighbors are all about killing gophers and squirrels.  I sent a text to one saying he had some on his driveway a day or 2 ago.  Today he sent a photo that he caught 3 today


(https://i.postimg.cc/mzn5K1v0/21392.jpg) (https://postimg.cc/mzn5K1v0)
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: Longranger on July 30, 2020, 01:46:50 PM
Added benefit it makes a good stud finder in my house when it is hot outside.
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: Wicked Mike on July 31, 2020, 07:56:23 PM
Just going to put this out there: they started calling me ďWicked MikeĒ years ago for a reason. My collection is up to over two thousand varieties of chiles, before you get into the other stuff. Iím not an expert on anything at all, but Iím pretty well-versed in all things Capsicum.

Peppers will work here. Had a problem with squirrels digging up my pepper plants to bury acorns. Thought, ďwell, Iíll teach those furry little b**stards a lesson they wonít soon forget.Ē Had a lot of dehydrated superhot s on my hands (as always). Ground them down into dust and sprinkled it around my plants, thinking Iíd light Ďem up good.

I never got the chance.

Hereís the thing: the first peppers werenít hot. Itís a survival adaptation to discourage small mammals. Makes sense, when you thing about it. Birds fly. They tend to disperse seeds over wide distances. By comparison, small herbivorous mammals donít. Itís in the plantís best interest that small, herbivorous mammals donít eat the fruit.

Comparable to the evolutionary adaptation in Passifloras. The unripe fruit contain procyanogens, which become cyanide in a mammalís body. When the seeds are viable, the procyanogens disappear, and the fruit magically becomes aromatic, delicious, nutritious, and more often than not changes color and/or falls on the ground.

Not magic, but science.

If you want to get pretty much any mammal to leave your plants alone, Iíd recommend scattering the dried, powdered form of the hottest pepper you can lay hands on. Be aware that youíll want to wear gloves and a mask and long sleeves. This is not something you want to get on your skin, take my word. Youíll have to do it fairly often, depending on rainfall/irrigation, but with the correct application, Iím pretty sure this would be effective even with bears.
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: Wicked Mike on July 31, 2020, 08:02:27 PM
Brad that sounds so satisfying. Currently I am using a .22 air rifle. I hate squirrels, rats and gophers. Squirrels the worst. Hope you don,t use that method in your greenhouse.

I only shoot the shotgun when they are on the perimeter of the orchard so theres no lead going in the grow area.  Im about to go set out some modified rat traps with nails in them tonight and see if I can get any that way.  The little buggers are a real pain.  I hate squirrels the most, followed by goohers and then jackrabbits.  We have some wild field mice that chew down young seedling trees too. 

Its a constant battle...

I have a great squirrel jerky recipe if you want it. Sounds like you could use it. Rabbitís not bad. Down this way, itís mostly gators, feral pigs, and invasive reptiles people hunt. Big constrictors, monitors, etc.
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: spaugh on August 02, 2020, 12:31:13 AM
Brad that sounds so satisfying. Currently I am using a .22 air rifle. I hate squirrels, rats and gophers. Squirrels the worst. Hope you don,t use that method in your greenhouse.

I only shoot the shotgun when they are on the perimeter of the orchard so theres no lead going in the grow area.  Im about to go set out some modified rat traps with nails in them tonight and see if I can get any that way.  The little buggers are a real pain.  I hate squirrels the most, followed by goohers and then jackrabbits.  We have some wild field mice that chew down young seedling trees too. 

Its a constant battle...

I have a great squirrel jerky recipe if you want it. Sounds like you could use it. Rabbitís not bad. Down this way, itís mostly gators, feral pigs, and invasive reptiles people hunt. Big constrictors, monitors, etc.

No thanks, I rather eat avocados then squirrels.  Much easier to gut and skin and they arent covered in fleas.

Ive bbq'd a few rabbits after drinking enough alcohol but they taste like garbage.  Something like catfish crossed with chicken.  They smell like crap when you chop them up and it doesnt really improve after grilling them.  We used to have a blue healer that would eat it.  Now I just leave all dead animals out on a big rock in the middle of the orchard and the vultures take care of it. 
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: Francis_Eric on August 04, 2020, 12:08:08 PM
The squirrels skip happily under the electric fence too; itís just to keep bears and deer out.

Is there a way to add chicken wire held down with bricks or buried to extend the electrical fence
or would that affect the other metal used (a site online says it can cause  electrolysis with different metals) ?

Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: Daintree on August 08, 2020, 02:05:24 PM
Generally speaking, there are usually enough squirrels in any given location that if you remove the ones you have, more just move in to fill the void.  Sort of like feral cats.

Which brings me to our squirrel solutions -
1. We adopted a feral cat who loves to lay under rose bushes in the front yard and terrorize the squirrels.  They won't come near when she is out.
2. My husband made a great concoction out of HOT HOT pepper powder from the Indian Market and water.  He sprays it on the apples and pears themselves, and it doesn't hurt the fruit, but does deter the squirrels.  When the water dries, the fruit is all covered with a fine red powder.  Then he sprinkles the pepper powder liberally on the ground under the trees.  The squirrels approach, start sneezing (literally! Watching a squirrel sneeze is entertainment in itself!), then hop around and run away.

Of course, our apple and pear trees are only about 10 ft tall...

Cheers,
Carolyn
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: Citradia on August 08, 2020, 10:23:40 PM
Thanks, Daintree.
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: Longranger on August 13, 2020, 03:10:35 PM
Will have to grow some superhots and try the pepper trick.
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: Laaz on August 13, 2020, 03:20:09 PM
Sometimes nature takes care of the problem for you...  ;D

(https://i.ibb.co/zVDrR4y/squir.jpg)
Title: Re: Squirrel repellent?
Post by: Yorgos on August 19, 2020, 01:50:20 PM
Brad that sounds so satisfying. Currently I am using a .22 air rifle. I hate squirrels, rats and gophers. Squirrels the worst. Hope you don,t use that method in your greenhouse.

I only shoot the shotgun when they are on the perimeter of the orchard so theres no lead going in the grow area.  Im about to go set out some modified rat traps with nails in them tonight and see if I can get any that way.  The little buggers are a real pain.  I hate squirrels the most, followed by goohers and then jackrabbits.  We have some wild field mice that chew down young seedling trees too. 

Its a constant battle...
Use steel shot.  Lead shot is generally illegal anyway.